An oral history of the resurrection of Fox Creek

Fox Creek’s fish have had a rough time. Salmon once ran here in good numbers, laying their “redds” of eggs throughout the stream. When Charles E. Fox and company broke ground on Rainier in 1851, the first industry was a fish house at the mouth of Fox Creek. Workers packed barrels with salted salmon andContinue reading “An oral history of the resurrection of Fox Creek”

Be on the lookout for these special reptiles

You may have noticed that snakes, turtles, lizards, and frogs are all out right now. There are several rare species in our county that we would love for you keep an eye out for. Sighting any of these, especially with a picture, would be a huge help for our study of reptiles and amphibians inContinue reading “Be on the lookout for these special reptiles”

Do you have kids who want to go herping with other kids?

Parents have asked us for group outings where kids can find salamanders, frogs, lizards, snakes, and turtles together. Unfortunately, both Matt and Jon are working outside the county and aren’t able to lead trips at the moment. But we think it’s a great idea! We are putting together a contact list for parents with childrenContinue reading “Do you have kids who want to go herping with other kids?”

Kauppi Lake and Weyerhaeuser permits

We’ve lost a lot of access to forest land over the last ten years. Many places I grew up exploring have been restricted or made off limits. But you can still find nice spots out there if you know the right route. This week, we’re showing you the way to Kauppi Lake. No matter howContinue reading “Kauppi Lake and Weyerhaeuser permits”

Everybody can herp!

“Herping” is the art of searching for reptiles and amphibians. It’s like birding, only you look down instead of up. Our daughter Sophia has been herping for as long as she’s been walking. As Sophia’s gotten older, it’s been wonderful to observe her joy in finding reptiles and amphibians when we spend time in theContinue reading “Everybody can herp!”

Scout Lake – Clatskanie’s secret getaway

In 1934, the Evenson family donated “Scout Lake” and 165 acres of surrounding forest to the City of Clatskanie for the benefit of community youth. Today, it’s one of the most pleasant forest lakes in Columbia County. Most county residents outside of Clatskanie don’t even know Scout Lake exists. So Matt and I decided toContinue reading “Scout Lake – Clatskanie’s secret getaway”

Family hike from Pisgah Trailhead

The Pisgah Trailhead of the Crown Z Trail might not have the marshes, birding, and wildlife of the trail to the east, or the forest solitude and geological wonders of the trail to the west, but….it’s there. So last year on the first day of spring, my family went on a walk from Pisgah toContinue reading “Family hike from Pisgah Trailhead”

Simple directions for Liberty Hill camas – letters due Jan 30

With few days left to submit, I’ve put together simplified instructions. I also keep gathering more photos and data of this incredible place, with a lot of help from other people who really care. Here is a new version of the video, taking advantage of additional drone shots of the meadow and a ton moreContinue reading “Simple directions for Liberty Hill camas – letters due Jan 30”

Liberty Hill’s camas and the impact of mining

A crushed rock mining company has submitted a proposal to demolish Liberty Hill in St. Helens. Liberty Hill is the largest Camas meadow left in northwest Oregon, is more pristine than any other such habitat within forty miles, and is home to an array of plants and wildlife rarely seen in our area including wildflowers,Continue reading “Liberty Hill’s camas and the impact of mining”

Scappoose’s forest park (Vista property)

Last year the City of Scappoose’s Isaac Butman asked me, “Have you checked out the Vista property?” “What’s that?” It turns out that City of Scappoose has 80 acres of forest property in town. I’ve been able to explore and, though facilities are limited, it’s a peaceful spot to enjoy some trees. Parking is theContinue reading “Scappoose’s forest park (Vista property)”